A judge ordered Prospect Park Residence owner Haysha Deitsch to pay $3.4 million to nine of the building’s aged residents over his 2014 attempt to evict them.
Most of the money will go to the five remaining members of the “Prospect Park 7,” who stood their ground and ultimately sued Deitsch to stop the eviction. The five are still living in the building, located at 1 Prospect Park West. They’ll have to relocate by August 31st, about 30 months after the landlord gave them just three months to clear out.
If Deitsch fails to make payments on time, the term will be extended. Four former residents who left in response to landlord’s eviction order will get a smaller chunk of the cash, the New York Post reported.
“It is definitely a win for our clients,” attorney Fred Millett told the Post. “With the settlement they were able to make plans to move elsewhere, and the money to make that happen.”
Deitsch ordered his residents out in March 2014. Around the same time, he agreed to sell the property to Sugar Hill Capital Partners for $76.5 million.
When residents resisted, the landlord allegedly cut the air conditioning, hiked rent and served them rotten food, even launching a $50 million countersuit earlier this year. A judge ordered Deitsch to keep the facility open while the case was adjudicated.
The residents’ case against the Department of Health, which approved Deitsch’s plan to evict them, remains ongoing. [NYP] – Ariel Stulberg